Chirp Wheel Review: How Well Does It Relieve Back Pain?

In this Chirp Wheel review, we cover the key features, pros, cons and our thoughts on using this back pain relief wheel to relieve tension in our aching backs.

Best GPS Watches for Ultrarunning & Trail Running in 2021

Ultrarunners have a very specific set of requirements when it comes to buying a GPS running watch. Our shortlist of top GPS running watches will help you decide which one is best for you.

Nike Pegasus 36 Trail GTX Review – The Best Winter Trail Shoes?

Nike Pegasus 36 Trail GTX in-depth review! Find out why these awesome waterproof winter trail running shoes win an Editor's Choice Award.

5 Best Headlamps for Trail Running, Ultrarunning, and Hiking! [2021 Buyer’s Guide]

[Buyer's Guide 2021] This best headlamps for trail running, ultrarunning, and hiking guide will help you find the best headlamp for your requirements & budget!

Best On Running Shoes Ranked With Reviews 2021: Ultimate Buyers Guide

The ULTIMATE 'Best of' list for On running shoes (Trail & Road), ranked & reviewed. Find out which On running shoes are best for YOU!

The Best Trail Running Shoes [2021 Buyer’s Guide]

These are the best trail running shoes we've tried this year! Find the right trail shoes for ultramarathons, marathons, 20k, 5k, Spartan/Tough Mudder, Swim-run

Chirp Wheel Review: How Well Does It Relieve Back Pain?

In this Chirp Wheel review, we cover the key features, pros, cons and our thoughts on using this back pain relief wheel to relieve tension in our aching backs.

Best GPS Watches for Ultrarunning & Trail Running in 2021

Ultrarunners have a very specific set of requirements when it comes to buying a GPS running watch. Our shortlist of top GPS running watches will help you decide which one is best for you.

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 – Road Running Shoe Review

What Salomon has to say about their flagship shoe for road running:

A precise and compliant running shoe, S-LAB SONIC 2 is our athlete’s choice for competing on the road.

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 perspective view
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 in all its un-boxed glory

Now I don’t often compete on the roads, but I do train on them, a lot. This isn’t particularly out of choice but rather practicality. For one thing, I don’t always have access to the trails, and sometimes, especially during the winter I find myself needing to run during hours of darkness.

With that in mind, the best place to run is usually where the streets are illuminated (I know many runners who use this light for personal safety too), and that means tarmac (or asphalt if you’re reading this from across the pond). Yes you can hit the trails with a head torch, but maybe you 1) don’t own one 2) don’t have it with you 3) forgot your spare batteries (It’s not much fun being in the middle of a trail, all alone in complete darkness because your torch ran out of batteries, doh!).

There are other benefits to running on the roads too, if you’re training for speed and wanting to increase your aerobic capacity, whilst really working on form and technique, then it’s much easier to find a long flat route to run on than a flat trail. You don’t even need to worry about stumbling due to uneven terrain; instead you can concentrate on finding that perfect cadence and form for the speed that you’re attempting to maintain.

With the “I don’t always run on trails, but wish I could.” disclaimer out the way lets get in to what I think about running in the S-Lab Sonic 2 shoes.


Fit

I have owned both predecessors of this shoe; the S-Lab X-Series and the Sonic(1st gen). In fact I’m still running through my pair of “1st generation” Sonics. Both those shoes have worked out really well for me in terms of fit. And the Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 is no different.


TOP DEALS FROM THE BRANDS WE LOVE

  1. Chirp Wheel+ Get $10 OFF Your Chirp Order - We can't recommend the Chirp Wheel enough for fixing back pain or simply stretching your back after a long day! 
  2. On Running | New On Running Classics have arrived! - This is the only place to grab discounted On Running gear.
  3. Organifi Green Juice | Use code TK15 for 15% OFF your Organifi Order - Green Juice is our favorite immunity-boosting superfood drink mix
  4. Fi GPS Dog Collar (Kepler's GPS activity tracking collar) Use code TK25 for $25 OFF

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 in all its unboxed glory
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 profile

I did however notice that the Sonic 2 has an ever so slightly higher ankle support which I felt rub on my ankle bone when I first put them on but apart from that the fit feels identical to its predecessors, and that’s a really good thing. I was initially concerned that the shape around the ankles had changed but after my first run, those worries had gone, and so I can only put it down to the shoe needing to be worn in.

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 back
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 back – notice the subtle slant inwards to be inline with your leg’s natural lean-in angle.

If you have run in other Salomon S-Lab shoes before then you can rest assured that the size fit of the Sonic 2 is 100% consistent with them. If you run in Inov-8, the sizing is also very true to that brand, as tested with the Roclite 290.

I’m a huge fan of Salomon’s S-Lab Sense range for trail running, and found the fit to be quite similar to them, including the minimal drop and form fitting “glove-like” feel. This “glove-like” feel can be attributed to what Salomon call Sensifit, a technology which wraps your foot up comfortably, precisely and securely. There is also an internal fit sleeve designed to hug the foot in exactly the right places and improve feedback and foot-wrapping. This is what Salomon call their Endofit system, which I have also found to help prevent dirt and stones from coming into the shoe.

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 top view
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 top view

One thing that you will notice if you’re not familiar with this line of road running shoe from Salomon is that the laces are of the traditional type. Most Salomon shoes use their patented Quicklace system which is a minimal and strong lace for one-pull tightening. Easy-on, easy-off. I love that system and have often wondered why it hasn’t been incorporated in to this shoe. I read somewhere that the reasoning behind this is that most road runners prefer the traditional lace system as it feels more comfortable and its what they’re used to. Fair enough. The laces don’t really bother me, but I do find myself having to double knot them to ensure they don’t come undone during my run.

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 front view
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 front view


Running in the Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2’s

These shoes weigh hardly anything (215g), and that is really important to me. After first running in an S-Lab Trail shoe some years ago,  almost every other alternative now feels too heavy to me. Having a more minimal shoe like this makes me feel I can run for longer without my form and technique declining towards the end of my workout.

Although this is clearly a road running shoe, I have also worn it on many buff trails. It performed extremely well in these situations, giving great response and cushioning when needed. There isn’t a protective toe cap like the S-Lab trail line, so be extra cautious for rocks if you do take them on the trails.

Plexus Co. (dba Chirp)
Plexus Co. (dba Chirp)
Plexus Co. (dba Chirp)
Plexus Co. (dba Chirp)

Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 grip
Salomon S-Lab Sonic 2 – The grip is perfect for both roads and buff trails.

The Sonic 2’s have a minimal feel but carry an 8mm drop from heel to toe. If you are moving from a more traditional road running shoe which is less minimal then I would advise you go easy on your first few runs, as you may notice an over stretching of the calves. Once you get used to this more “pure” style of running then I’m sure you will love it. Good running form should come naturally as a result of running in minimal shoes.


In Summary

I can’t find much to fault about these shoes. I have been a fan of the X-Series/Sonic line since the beginning. There are clear exterior design changes each generation, but that same great feel remains and that’s what I originally fell in love with. So kudos to Salomon for keeping true to their original vision for this shoe!

Whether you’re a trail runner at heart, who also trains on the roads (like me) or a pure road runner, these shoes are definitely worth giving a try. And if you already run in S-Lab trail shoes but need a similar feel and fit for training on the roads, the Sonic 2’s will be the perfect transition, as you’ll already be used to the “S-Lab feel” that you probably love.

If you want to see for yourself, here’s the link!

If you have any questions about the shoes or anything relating to them then please leave a comment below and I will reply as soon as possible. Happy Trails!!



Join our fast growing Instagram Community

@trailandkale

use #trailandkale for a chance to be featured on the feed

[instagram-feed disablemobile=true num=12 cols=6 showheader=false showbutton=true showfollow=true ]



 


2 COMMENTS

  1. I am looking at this shoes and Sonic RA 2 for daily training, easy and long runs. Sonic RA 2 seems to be the choice because the S-lab Sonic 2 is very race specific? Do you think S-lab Sonic 2 can be used as daily trainers at slower pace? Which do you recommend?

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Alastair
Alastairhttps://www.trailandkale.com
Hey, I'm Alastair. I started Trail & Kale to share the mental & physical benefits that trail running and nature had given me. This site now inspires hundreds of thousands of people all over the world to trail run, hike, adventure more, and live a healthy plant-based lifestyle. It's also a place to learn how to chase your dreams, untether from convention and live more self-sustainably.

Don't Miss Out!

Subscribe to our Newsletter to get more trail running & outdoor adventure advice, gear reviews, and inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.

- Advertisement -

TRENDING NOW

latest Gear Reviews/Guides

The Ultimate Fastpacking Gear Guide [Ultralight Backpacking Starts Here!]

Everything you need to know about Fastpacking and the Ultimate Gear Guide to make ultralight backpacking adventures as fun, safe, and comfortable as possible.